Friday, July 10, 2020


This montage from our Podcast Vault revisits a post from August 30, 2013. It can be found in our archives at


Normally, our throwback montages correspond to our daily musical calendar podcast. This week, however, the musical calendar selection is from our Tuesday series, which gives us the opportunity to peak into the Podcast Vault for something we haven’t listened to for awhile.

In summers past, we shared montages as part of a recurring series we called The Musical Passport – montages that explore an area of the world, often using pieces from non-native composers. What was unique about our feature this week – Scandinavia – is that all of the composers are Scandinavian: Nielsen, Grieg, Sibelius and Sweden’s Dag Wirén.

I make a point to distinguish Sweden because the first three composers are generally thought of as “National” composers for Denmark, Norway and Finland respectively. However, there is no consensus National composer for Sweden.

As our bonus track this week, I thought I’d add to Wirén and Franz Berwald as Swedish composers of renown by adding Lars-Erik Larsson (1908 –1986), a contemporary of Wiren’s who also studied at the Stockholm Conservatory.

Music for Orchestra (1948-49)
Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Sylvain Cambreling (Conductor)

I think you will (still) love this music too.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Glenn Gould, Beethoven, Liszt ‎– Piano Transcription: Symphony No. 6 (''Pastoral'')

This is my post from this week's Tuesday Blog.

This week, our lone Tuesday Blog share for July completes our two-part look at Liszt’s transcriptions of Beethoven’s symphonies, with a performance of the Pastoral Symphony.

For the past few months, we have been living through a pandemic and, as I considered musing about this week’s share, I got to wonder how Glenn Gould – a notorious germophobe – would have fared through a situation like this one. My conclusion is simple: I think he would done just fine, given he lived most of his final years in self-imposed lockdown, avoiding public gatherings and keeping very much to himself.

Today’s share is a Sony re-edition of a CBC Radio broadcast performance recorded: June 11, 1968. At a little over 55 minutes, Gould savoutrs every note, in a very internal performance. As this was recorded in his home studio in Toronto under his manic supervision, one has to think that this is a performance totally aligned with his vision of the work, with ever note in place.


Franz LISZT (1811-1886)
Piano transcriptions of Beethoven Symphonies, S. 464
Symphony No.6 in F Major, Op.68 'Pastoral' [S.464/6]
Glenn Gould, Piano

Sony Classical ‎– SMK 52637, Sony Classical ‎– WSK 52637
(The Glenn Gould Edition )
Released: 1993


Internet Archive -

Friday, July 3, 2020

Cowboy Classics

This montage from our Podcast Vault revisits a post from July 8, 2011. It can be found in our archives at


As we discussed in our original post introducing today’s montage, the cowboy mystique has inspired countless works of music – film and television scores, and works for the stage. American composers of course have penned memorable melodies we rightly associate with cowboys, but also composers from abroad.

The two main works on the montage – Aaron Copland’s ballet Rodeo and Puccini’s final act from the Girl from the Golden West are excellent examples of ambitious stage works that look at romance in the open prairie – one lighthearted and the other with dramatic twists.

As filler today, I found the complete performance of Puccini’s opera that I used in the montage.

Minnie: Renata Tebaldi
Ramerrez: Mario del Monaco
Jack Rance: Cornell MacNeil
Chorus and Orchestra of the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia
Franco Capuana, conducting

I think you will (still) love this music too.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Project 366 - Dates on the Musical Calendar for July 2020

Project 366 continues in 2019 with "Dates on the Musical Calendar". Read more here.

  • 1-Jul       Canada Day [Guide #350]
  • 4-Jul       Independence Day (USA) [Guide #351]
  • 7-Jul       Happy Birthday Gustav  Mahler (Born OTD 1860) [Guide #264]
  • 14-Jul    Bastille Day (France) [Guide #352]

On account of the COVID-19 pandemic, public health measures as well as continuing concern for the health and well-being of the community led organizers to the 2020 edition of the Calgary Stampede. Though it cannot be celebrated in traditional way, Stampede Spirit can’t be cancelled! In this spirit, spirit we have kept our Cowboy Classics montage on the calendar [Guide #61]
Symphonies by Tchaikovsky, Nielsen and Mahler adorn the calendar, along with two full-lengtyh operas: Dialogues of the Carmelites [Guides # 353 & 354] and L’Elisir d’Amore [Guides # 355 & 356]

Your Listener Guides

Listener Guide #350 – Canada Day
As our regular listeners will attest, scarcely a listener guide goes by without its fair share of "Canadian content". To celebrate Canada Day, we assembled a montage of music featuring Canadian compositions and performers. (ITYWLTMT Montage # 12 - July 1, 2011)

Listener Guide #351 – America
America is synonymous with migration - save for the people from the First Nations, everybody (or their ancestors) have come from elsewhere. Many of today's musical selections are indicative of travel to America, or of people that have elected to live in America. (ITYWLTMT Montage # 116 - 02 Aug, 2013)

Listener Guide #352 – Séjour musical en France
Tarbes is a commune in the Hautes-Pyrénées, in south-western France. And it is the birthplace of French pianist Cécile Ousset, who will be our soloist in Poulenc’s Piano Concerto. In this (in my opinion) definitive performance, she is ably backed-up by Rudolf Barshai and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. (ITYWLTMTMontage #15 - July 22, 2011)

Listener Guide #353 & 354 – Dialogues des carmélites
The opera explores the drama surrounding the Carmelites of Compiegne, sixteen Carmelite nuns (cloistered) sentenced to death in July 1794 by the Revolutionary Tribunal on the grounds of "fanaticism and sedition." Arrested and convicted at the height of the Terror, they had two years earlier, vowed to give their lives to "appease the wrath of God and the divine peace that his dear Son came to bring the world." Their peaceful death on the scaffold impressed the crowd and was one of the many seminal events that put an end to this dark chapter in post-Revolutionary France. (Once or Twice a Fortnight -14 Nov 2013)

Acts 1 &2 - L/G 353, Acts 3 & 4 - L/G 354

Listener Guide #355 & 356 – L'Elisir d'Amore
L'elisir d'amore (The Elixir of Love) is a melodramma giocoso in two acts. Felice Romani wrote the Italian libretto, after Eugène Scribe's libretto for Daniel Auber's Le philtre (1831). Composed in less than a month (according to The New Grove Masters of Italian Opera) l’elisir d'amore was the most often performed opera in Italy between 1838 and 1848 and has remained continually in the international opera repertoire. Today it is one of the most frequently performed of Donizetti's 75 operas. (Once or Twice a Fortnight - 20 Oct 2012)

Act 1 - L/G 355, Act 2 - L/G 356